Published: 11:47, 25 May 2022
| Updated: 14:53, 25 May 2022
The sound of jet engines firing up and soaring into the sky, the thrill of take-off, Tom Cruise zooming around on a motorbike and all to the soundtrack of Danger Zone by Kenny Loggins.
Sound familiar? It should do, because Top Gun: Maverick will take you back to the original, stir up all the best memories and then serve it up with an extra thrill. And all before the opening credits have even finished rolling.
Cruise is back as US Navy fighter pilot Lt Pete “Maverick” Mitchell and it feels like he's never been away.
The movie is on general release from today, but we were invited to an exclusive screening at Showcase Cinema de Lux Bluewater yesterday to mark its refurbishment.
From the opening sequences, it's clear Maverick may be older but he's still breaking the boundaries, defying orders by jumping into a sexy-looking test fighter plane and ramping it up to Mach 10 and beyond. He's still pushing everything to the limit but somehow getting away with it.
Well almost. He ends up on his next mission after exasperated top brass have had enough but an old colleague comes to his rescue, demanding he train the best-of-the-best to take on a mission most believe cannot be done.
And so the plotline unfurls with many nods to the past especially his much-missed buddy Goose, whose son Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw (Miles Teller) is part of the elite squad Maverick is now in charge of.
There's LOTS of action in the air (which let's face it, is what we're all there to see), tempers flare, friendships are forged and the still-single Maverick rekindles his flirting with local bar owner Penny (Jennifer Connelly).
The recruits bear similar traits to the original class, although this time there's a female pilot too.
Oh, and there's American Football team-building on the beach with a lot of flesh on show.
The rest, you need to find out for yourself. Honestly, go see it, you won't regret it. If you loved the first, you'll love this – I've still butterflies in my stomach 12 hours after from the thrill of it all.
And while money is tight right now, pay for the best screening you can. It's one of those films which is hundred times better if you've forked out for the latest technology.
Which brings me back to Bluewater's cinema.
The Greenhithe venue has been under refurbishment since October 2021, remaining open for the duration of the building work.
Each of the cinema’s 17 auditoriums now include fully customisable recliner seating as standard and it also has two supersized, giant XPlus screens, featuring crystal clear laser projection, as well as fully immersive Dolby Atmos sound.
And boy, when those fighter planes fire up, you'll know it.
You can book tickets here.